Craig Maas
Notes 2005

More Hard Drive Bad Luck

I was recovering data to my primary back up hard drive from all the various CD back ups I had laying around. This back up partition on my external Firewire drive had some files which are newer than any others. While making a transfer from my last file of the last CD, Windows crashed and wouldn't come back up. I was thinking, "I've made a big mistake switching to Windows." When I unhooked the Firewire drive, all was well with Windows XP but it' would not accept the Firewire drive. When I hooked it up to the iBook, the computer wanted to initialize the partition. Oh no. I don't need the data right away, so I'm working slow on recovering the partition. I ran Intech Hard Drive Speed Tools on the drive. It was the program I used to create the partitions. I could see the 'Backup' but wouldn't mount it. I wasn't too surprised by this but I was a little disappointed the program didn't have any repair tools. On eBay I bid on TechTools Pro which I got for $13, I'm pretty confident it will recover the partition.

Windows XP isn't trouble free. I'm having problems with the hard drive requirements. I have Windows 98 in a 2gb partition, Windows XP in a 2gb partition, and my Programs in a 4gb partition. Windows XP is running out of room. It's a really memory hog. I've heard good things about Partition Magic so I 'Made An Offer' on eBay for $16 and got it. I intend to read the manual carefully first. I'm a little nervous, but my plan it to wipe the Windows98 partition and merge it with the Windows XP partition and possibly the Programs partition. I have to do something soon XP is complaining about room.

May 31, 2005

Soccer Photos

With Sean's soccer photos scanned I didn't need the prints so I made a poster and pinned it to his bulletin board. He called to thank me when he got home from Iowa. I had also hooked up my 17 inch Apple Studio monitor to their POC300 which the boys had inherited from PD's on First. This is my old Windows 98 computer which they're using for games. The monitor was in my way at home, and their 15 inch monitor is so bad that I fear for their eyes.

May 30, 2005

Gram Chapman on Saturday Night Live

Bob told me some months ago that NBC was airing old SNL reruns early Sunday morning. So I've been setting my VCR for 2 AM to catch them. They aren't as funny as I remember them but they're still pretty good. Tonight's was from 1982 with host Olivia Newton John. I was surprised to see Gram Chapman of Monty Python, (and Suzanne's ex-father-in-law), featured on the show. I didn't remember that at all.

May 29, 2005

Cut My Hair

I went over to Suzanne's to feed the cats. They were happy to see me. I know Bob had cut his own hair a couple times so I decided to try it myself. I put on the 1/2 inch attachment but it was too long, it wouldn't cut any of my hair, it would just push it out of the way of the cutting blade. I switched to the 1/4 attachment. This made all the difference. I can't see what it looks like in the back. No one has said any thing although the smirks make me nervous.

I have a SCSI card for Windows but I the ARS2500 has a small case, so I don't have anyway of scan right now. Last Sunday I shot a roll of film as Sean's last soccer game with the intention of scanning either the prints or negatives. Now I can't do either. While I was at Suzanne's I decided to use her HP flat bed scanner. I didn't care for the software HP provided, but the scans were good enough for the web.

May 28, 2005

Zero Assumption Digital Image Recovery

Suzanne, Paul, Tim and Sean went to Iowa for the weekend. They're loaning me their iBook so I have a Mac during this difficult transition. Their iBook has problems too. The extension manager crashes if you try to use it. This mean I can't add any features I'm use to using. I tried Disk Warrior on it but no luck. Even the CF card reader seems to have crapped out on me leaving only burning CDs to get info in and out of the machine.

My photos were backed up pretty well, they are on multiple hard drives including Suzanne's and also burned to CD. However the last couple batches were on my primary photo partition on another hard drive, which appears to have failed when I was trying to recover off of the IBM drive. It's a Western Digital SCSI drive. I was able to load OS 9 on to it, but then the USB, Firewire and even the CD didn't works. I monkeyed with this drive and the 7500 for a couple of days before giving up. I can't hear it spin up any more. Maybe it's something else, all I know is I can't seem to access it.

I know the photos are still on the CF card, however I've since formatted the CF card. I also know from reading "Digital Photography Hacks" that you can recover those photos from the card. I looked and there were many programs, so many that I narrowed the search by programs which were free. I download "Zero Assumption Digital Image Recovery" because it was pretty small. Small or not it did the job and recovered all the photos off the card. Some of the photos I had already post on the web of Grandma Anna's 100th Birthday and then her funeral. But it was nice to recover all the photos in their full resolution.

May 27, 2005

Quickbooks 2003

Effective Concepts accounting files was a hard blow to take. It was lessened by the realization that when I was doing our taxes I had copied the file to the ARS2500. It was still on the computer, which is now our primary computer. Thankfully QuickBooks was able to open the file without losing anything. This newer version has some nice features, and some features it's going to take some getting use to. I read the manual over the weekend. There's nothing surprising, just some new ways of doing old things. I like the ability to customize forms. It means I don't have to buy Laser Merge- at least not right away.

Dad and I took turns typing in the last three months worth of financial data. It didn't take very long. Dad was asking about his personal accounting in Quicken. He wanted to run out and buy a copy of Quicken 2005. I told him I would take care off it. I checked with Amazon. The consensus was it wasn't any good. This applied to 2004, and 2003. I went on eBay and started bidding on 2002. I got it for 1.99- it was a sealed copy too. I also had to watch out for the 'New User' versions which won't let you import old data. As it was there was no easy way to import our old data. On the Intuit web site there was a page on conversions with lots of steps. After all the steps I got data transferred to Quicken 2002. The amount of data which is missing is a little daunting. I'm hoping that online banking may be the key here.

May 26, 2005

Core FTP

Some of my work is very easy to recover. Everything I've done on the web, is still on the web. Windows XP has a built in FTP client in "Internet Explorer" but I don't like it or Explorer so I downloaded "Core FTP" this seems to work pretty good. I don't have "Dreamweaver" for Windows, but I've been coding a lot of my web sites by hand. On Windows I'm using Note Pad Pro as a text editor, which works fine. I've also downloaded "Nvu" an open source HTML editor and layout program. It seems like it will work out okay for me. It's part of the big Mozilla open source group. I use their browser: Foxfire. I'm also using lots of other open source software: CDex, 40tude, Tagscanner. I find it works better for me than the commercial software most people use. I do miss Freehand by Macromedia. I may buy the Studio version of the program so I get Dreamweaver and Flash. I'm also looking for Photoshop. I may try Elements first. I might even go open source and try GIMP.

May 25, 2005

IBM Click of Death

Dad and I were busy working. I went to save a file I was working on. The hard drive clicked a couple times and then the computer locked up. When I tried to restart the computer it just clicked some more. I knew I had an IBM SCSI hard drive and I knew they had a problem with early failures but mine had been running fine for some years.

Before this, I had told dad I was torn between getting a Mini-Mac and dumping the Mac all together and going Windows. Now the decision was made easier for me. Rather than run two or even three systems in parallel, I would be switching cold turkey. I would be like "Bewitched" when they replaced Dick York with Dick Sargent.

I did some research. Some had luck freezing their hard drives and quickly copying data over to a new hard drive. I had the drive and space to do this. I put the IBM drive in the freezer. Wednesday (5/25) I hooked it up but it was still clicking. I had most everything backed up, but not up to date. There were a lot of work in progress files which will be hard to recover. Making matters worse, I'll be switching platforms.

May 24, 2005

Pot Luck at Riverside Estate Park

It's been over a week since I got this cold. The worst of it is over by my sinuses are still bothering me. It doesn't take much to trigger a headache in my head, so the pressure in my sinuses are causing daily headaches. Suzanne had to attend an event at the St Joseph for Tim. So, Sean called me yesterday and asked if I could take him to soccer practice and the pot luck party afterwards. I told him I would get back to him. As dad didn't leave for Minneapolis this week, I was available.

I was early when I arrived at Suzanne and Paul's house. Sean and I played outside. It was growing very hot outside. It wasn't just the running around after the ball either. Sean and I started playing Four Square. He kept launching the ball into the ditch, still full of water from recent rains. We switched to a little baseball, but when every hit meant a lot of running after the ball, we decided to switch to kickball. I was getting exhausted, it was time to go. Suzanne had prepared hot dogs in a crockpot. I waited in the van, as I couldn't see the point of standing in a field watching Sean practice with his teammates. Jumping Jacks, running back and forth, and ball handling drills. The Moorhead Park District guy came by and unlocked the building. I helped the soccer moms set up. I brought in my food and tried to make conversation. No good, they were content on talking about food and soccer mom topics. I got tired of trying to listen to their clucking and I was tired of their fat pasty soccer mom thighs. You would think at least one of them would be in shape.

The kids were happy with the meal, there was lots of food and a surprisingly good selection of stuff to eat. Usually everyone just brings Jello. Sean didn't require my attention, he was goofing around with his friends. I waited around for Suzanne and Tim. They arrived shortly. By then the kids had finished and were outside in the playground. Suzanne and I ate and chatted about Star Wars III and CSI. I helped her pack up. I went home sort of disappointed.

Sean called Friday (5/20). He called to invite me over for supper. This wasn't unexpected. I told Suzanne I had taped CSI last night; I know she wanted to see it. I had another sinus triggered headache. I was going to leave early but time got away from me. I did not fall asleep, I was doing some reading about Memory. I lost an hour, just gone. It was a little after 3:00 and then suddenly it was 4:30. I'm not sure where it went. I did NOT fall asleep and I don't recall reading that long. When I got to their turnoff, Paul was coming around the corner in his van. I waved. I assumed he was going back to work. I had talked to him at PDs after lunch. He said it would be a slow night. He showed me the portable 8,000 BTU air conditioner he bought at Home Depot. This seems too small to be any value. Tuesday I told to figure out how to keep the hall AC on. We wandered out into the hall, and soon found the thermostat. Over ride the temp, keep the fan speed up and he should have no troubles.

Suzanne told me Paul was getting eggs and would be back. I took Sean and Tim into Sean's room. They seemed content to play with me even though I was laying on their bed, eyes closed, face down. We played a blind version of I Spy. Every so often Tim would jump on me. It was actually relaxing and my headache faded.
Paul whipped up a Blue cheese sause for the New York cut steaks Suzanne was making. We also had corn on the cob and watermelon. It was very good. After supper, Sean, Tim and I played soccer with a nerf ball in Sean's bedroom, then 'Hot Potato' with the same ball. The boys had a bath while Paul, Suzanne, and I watched the season finale of CSI. (Las Vegas). It was pretty intense. Suzanne was yelling at the boys to leave the living room. Sean is use to watching CSI so he kept trying to catch a glimpse of what was so intense… Quentin Tarantino's direction. Then it started to rain. It makes me nervous ever since I drown our Caravan in a flash downpour. It wasn't as bad as the downpour I drove home in a couple weeks ago, but I didn't have the high ground clearance of the Astro van as mom was loading it with plants for the fund raiser auction tomorrow.

May 19, 2005

Sylvania SRT2432S Color TV

My 1988 GE Television has been cutting out. It seems to run a couple hours and then the picture and sound disappear. Odd because the channel numbers appear on the screen so it's not the tube. Some times you can turn it off and on, and it will start up again, but then it will turn off not much later. It must be some sort of heat thing. It was getting worse so I kept my eye on a TV. I decided I wanted the same one Victor got- a 27 inch Sylvania with a flat picture tube.

Unfortunately weeks went by and it didn't go on sale. This week Sears had a close out sale on all large tube televisions. I got the impression they are not going to sell large tube televisions anymore. It sort of makes sense. If you're going to get a big TV you'll probably looking at a Plasma Screen or LCD TV. Me, I know the prices are going to come down a lot more, so I just want a nice size tube TV to hold me over. I thought the 32 inch TV which I was looking at a month ago was too big and too heavy. Bob and I went over to Sears to check out the sale. No 27 inch flat tube Sylvania at all. I kept looking at the 32 inch. Bob said he'd help carry it upstairs. I also looked at a 24" flat tube Sony WEGA which was 40 dollars more but I really like the 27 inch Sony WEGA that Suzanne has. (They actually have two of them.) Bob and I got it upstairs. I got it set up and adjusted it. I noticed the case was cracked in the front. I thought about complaining but I don't want to carry it back. I'll just live with it.

May 15, 2005

Radeon 7000 Video Card

Thinking about what I want to do as far as upgrading my computers. I'm getting less interested in buying a new Mac. Even the Mac Mini seems a little over priced for what you get. If I decide to do nothing, I would like to get a bigger monitor particularly a Dell 20 inch LCD. To drive it I need a bigger video card for my Mac. I was looking on Ebay and found these Radeon 7000 with 64mb on the card. This seemed like way to go. Rather than think about it forever I bought it right away.

Wednesday (5/18) I had some free time. Dad was going to Minneapolis (but he never got out of town) so I unhooked my 7500 and took off the case. I was full of dust. I took it into the garage and used the fireplace bellows to blow it out. Probably a bad idea but it seemed to work pretty good. Back downstairs I installed the Radeon card. I filled the remaining PCI slot. I also took my Panasonic CD-R drive out of the case and swapped out the CD drive in the 7500. Now my 7500 is completely filled with drives, cards, and busses. The only thing I can add now is memory. I turned the fan on the power supply up some more. It's bound to get warm.

The card is working fine. It sped up some functions but not as many or as much as I had hoped. It does make the monitor look much better. I shows resolutions up to 1600x1200 but at 60hz which flickers when I look at it. I'm hoping it won't be noticeable in a LCD monitor.

Sara Schaffer called. She's looking at getting a notebook computer. I told her Dell has some good prices especially if you use the coupons. I emailed her the link for a coupon site which seems to specialize in Dell coupons. Got Apex
I looked in my last Dell catalog. For a 12" notebook computer the model 700 is nice. For a 15" notebook the 6000 is good.

May 14, 2005

Anna Maas Funeral

Char and Ray were leaving early with former pastor David Quam (as a guest soloist). I rode with Paul, Suzanne, Sean and Tim - listing to my iPod. The boys were quietly playing Nintendo games.

Tim placing Rose Petals on Anna's CasketI told them to take the new 281 Bypass around Jamestown. The 281 Bypass curved all around Jamestown and joined up with Highway 52 right at the Highland Home Cemetery. It's a much nicer cemetery than Sunset. However, it was cold, windy and rainy day. The tent helped but not a lot. It was a very simple ceremony. I stayed in the car until it was time to start. I took some photos. Doug Opp, the pastor from St. John's, said a few words, read a Psalm, said a prayer, and read the life story Judy wrote for the Program.. I set up my boombox with a backing CD of "In the Garden", David Quam led the dozen or so guests. Gladys passed around a basket of rose petals to place on the casket. Sean and Tim liked that.

No one was going to hang around in this weather, not with a warm meal waiting at the church. Suzanne commented on the casket that it fit Anna's personality. A light blue fabric wrapped wood casket. Sure it wasn't expensive but that fit Anna's personality too.

St John's Lutheran Church in Jamestown is the Maas family church. It was ten years ago we celebrated Grandma Anna's 90th birthday in this basement. Pastor Opp led a lunch prayer. I put in a cassette backing tape for "How Great Thou Art", It was a bombastic backing, but quickly settled into the tune proper. David has a nice baritone with a good vibrato. I think everyone was impressed. I thought his timing was off- like he hadn't used this tape in a long time.

The food was good- a scalloped potato and ham hot dish, buns and cake. I was sick and didn't want to eat much.
"Sir, we have plenty of hot dish."
"I don't feel good."
She pats me on the back, "That's understandable."
It dawns on me she's thinking mental anguish, but I'm just nauseous.

Dad started the story telling by repeating the Hershey bar story. (see 5/11). I bought along a really good story I wrote for her 90th Birthday, but my throat was killing me. I wouldn't be able to read it, so I left it my pocket and stayed quiet. Many of the guests had stories to tell. It was quite nice.

We left at 12:30 to see Grandma Bertha Letcher at the nursing home before leaving for home. If it wasn't for the weather and my cold, this would have been a pretty good day. The funeral was nice and simple.

May 12, 2005

I Finally Get A Cold

I went all fall and winter without any kind of cold or flu, or even bursitis which I usually get once when it cools down and once when it warms up. Everyone in the family has been sick at least a few times. Over at the Dobbins' it's like China with all the colds they get. There have been times where I thought I was coming down with something only to wake feeling good. Not today. The scratching in my throat grew worse and worse. Sucking on those Ricola didn't seem to help. The menthol in them probably made it worse. By late evening it was really bad. I was up most of the night gargling in salt water and sucking on ice cubes.

Thursday (5/12) I woke with a full blown cold. The nausea worried me the most. I had two pieces of dry toast. I called Suzanne and Paul. I was sure they gave me this cold last Tuesday. They said it probably wouldn't get worse. Dad told me to stay home and take care of myself. I wanted to attend the funeral. The nausea came and went but never stayed long. I was riding with Suzanne and Paul so I wasn't concerned about infecting them, and I would stay away from everyone else. I gargled on salt water to put out the fire in my throat.

When I got back home from Jamestown, I started taking Alka Seltzer Cold Medicine and went to bed. The Alka Seltzer didn't seem to work as good as in the past. My nose was really running. I took a lot of long naps on Friday. By Saturday the Alka Seltzer was catching up and I was feeling better. The sinus pressure was finally dropping to breathable levels.

May 11, 2005

Elim Care Center: Bedside Service

The staff at Elim wanted to hold a little bed side service for Anna. We brought Anna's photos back with us. I introduced myself to Margaret, Anna's roommate, she was from Fargo and is a very nice lady. The staff filled in as did the Elim pastor and chaplain. Lucille showed up as she couldn't attend the funeral tomorrow. A quick reading of the bible and then we shared stories. I picked a couple dealing with Anna's days at Elim so the staff could relate. Anna was popular at Elim quite a number of the staff were in the room including Tim Hager the administrator.

Dad told a story about Anna's problem with short term memory- or lack there of.

"I took mom to the Cove for coffee and pie. (The Cove is a small little on site restaurant, coffee shop and store.) After pie I would always buy mom two Hershey bars. She would eat one and then take the other one back to the room. When we got back to the room I started to quiz her,
'Mom, do you remember what you just ate?'
She thought for a minute and then said, 'The only think I can remember is eating a Hershey bar.'
I was surprised she could remember this. 'What made you remember that!'
'Well, I can taste it on my teeth.'"
Everyone laughs at this story and even more surprised as he brings out a big box of Hershey bars and starts handing them out to everyone.

As we were wrapping everything up Gladys arrives. She thought it was at 2:20, but I had never heard anything other than 2:00 pm. As I got to the front entrance I ran into Suzanne. I felt bad that she had missed this nice little ceremony. In the hall dad told his Hershey story to Gladys and Suzanne, then again to Holly the receptionist. Mom wanted to do some grocery shopping. Gladys offered us a ride home but couldn't find room in her car, so we rode home with Suzanne.

May 11, 2005

Writing Obituaries

I worked on the obituaries along with Gladys. It seemed like they were writing the same one over and over again. I guess it was part of the grieving process, so I shut up and kept typing them. I found a decent picture to use. I adjusted the color balance but they still managed to screw it all up. We sent two version of the obituary to Haut. One to run in the Fargo Forum and one to run in the Jamestown Sun. Both papers made corrections. I had the cemetery name wrong so I fixed that in my bulletin. (In Remembrance of Anna Maas) They both appeared in Wednesday's papers. The Fargo Forum splits up the obituaries so a number of people commented to me that they didn't see it. I also found I couldn't link to it. That was fine as the Jamestown Sun was better- they have the colored photo too. (Jamestown Sun obituary)

Dad was attending the Elim President's dinner with mom tonight. Gladys was going to Nursing meeting at First Lutheran. Dad wanted me to print up 48 sets of covers for his book "How To Wow The One You Love". I managed to print them up. It went quicker than I thought. I did use up all the cyan ink. I checked and found the pricing isn't too bad on generic ink you just have to buy a lot of it. I went over to Suzanne's to watch American Idol. The boys were acting up, probably because I was there. Soon they made one outburst too many and were sent to their rooms. Paul was told to get the bag. This is their worst punishment, as any toy found on the floor is fair game for the bag. They were told earlier to clean their rooms, as the cleaning lady was coming tomorrow.

May 10, 2005

Grandma Anna Dies

Dad walks in to tell me Grandma died. I told him I had guessed it would be tonight. Gladys stops by that afternoon. She tells me she was with grandma all morning. Gladys went to lunch, and when she came back Anna's breathing became shallow. Then it stop. Anna's body made one last vain effort at a breath and it was all over. Gladys held her hand and told her it was alright to leave. That's how I want to go. Gladys prayed with the chaplain. Even though it wasn't a surprise, it's still your mom, and it hurts.

At this point it was kind of like the eye of a hurricane- it was relatively calm. Dad was making calls and setting up the funeral arrangements. He told me later it was good to wait, as he arranged a funeral for the conditions that were rather than conditions that might have been. He also said it helped with the grieving process. Dad went with Haut Funeral Home in Jamestown. He really liked talking with them as they seemed to take a personal interest. Conversely the funeral home the Maas family has used in the past did not seem to be listening. So dad made the break, and Haut did an excellent job. (Sign the guest book and read the obituary)

Last night I told dad's cousin Marilyn West she could come over tonight. We updated and reworked the Botanical Society Program. I broke the news that her beloved aunt Anna passed away this afternoon. It was alright, soon we were laughing and joking as we worked on the program. Marilyn told me it wouldn't take long, but I knew better. It took three hours and one return trip on Monday to finish it off.

May 9, 2005

Mother's Day Brunch Buffet At PDs

Dad slipped me a note while I was eating breakfast, "We're meeting at PD's at 11:30 am." I didn't realize it was a secret, not that I told anyone. I just assumed we would be there. It's bittersweet with Grandma Anna slipping away. Gladys said grandma's breathing was more shallow this morning. I sent emails to those I had email addresses for. I asked Gene Maas, Carol Peterson and Ray Diemert to forward the message to others in the family. In hindsight we should have done more calling. I typed up Judy's notes for the obituary and brought all the print outs so they could rewrite them yet again.

I dressed up and took off early. I figured it would difficult to find a decent parking spot. I parked on the street by the fire station. The parking lot was almost empty; I should have used the code. I was a nice day with the sun shining and warm. I didn't mind the short walk. I was the first one there. I went up front to talk with Ian. He survived his 21st birthday but couldn't get the key in his door so he passed out in the hallway. He was in fine spirits cutting the Prime Rib today. Mom and dad drove up, followed by Gladys and Judy. The restaurant filled up but not too bad the entire upstairs dining area was open. Paul thought they lost money as they prepared more food than had guests. The food was great. Even with a limited buffet menu (PDF file) each item was very good. I went back for seconds and thirds. It's easy to eat a lot if you don't drink anything.

Suzanne, Sean, Tim, and Paul stopped by later that afternoon. Paul, Tim, Sean and I played Soccer in the backyard. I got winded but not too bad. Bob showed up about the time Suzanne was ready to leave.

May 8, 2005

Windy Soccer Game

Paul had a food delivery scheduled for today, cutting it close for Sunday Brunch. Suzanne was concerned about Tim, and asked if I would take Sean to soccer this morning. It wasn't nearly as cold as it was two weeks ago but it was even windier. It looked like rain too. As I dropped dad off at Elim, it started to rain. I brought my rain jacket which I bought at TJ Max for $10 or less. The best thing about this jacket is the lining- rain, wind, or cold I was set. Sean was ready to go, but of course he forgot his water. The rain had stopped by the time we got to the Moorhead Soccer fields. I made Sean take his jacket as I parked the car. He never did wear it; it's lucky it didn't blow away. I stood behind the coach and watched the game safe in my plastic jacket with my iPod providing a nice little soundtrack. The game went quickly. Sean's team had the wind with them for the first half. They scored goal after goal. The wind assisted most of them. In some cases the wind took the ball at half field and blew it all the way into the goal. The goalie would then make the mistake of kicking the ball up into the wind where it would blow back behind him and he'd have to run after it as it accelerated into the next field. I think they finally realized- if you're gonna kick it, kick low. In the second half the teams changed sides. The wind was no friend of the opposing team. Either that or our goalie was much better. Our offense immediately scored a goal against the wind and didn't let up. Sean is one of the smallest kids on his team. At first I didn't think he was playing very well, as he was always standing alone while the action took place elsewhere. I wondered why the coach kept putting him in as forward. It dawned on me Sean was playing the game correctly, getting open and lining up shots, but it was his team mates that refuse to pass the ball ever. This is why both sides where forever bunched up around the ball. The ball was rarely passed except by accident. The player either scored or the ball was striped by the opposing team. It was so bad that Sean sat down to tie his shoe as the forwards fought over the ball just a few feet away from him. The sidelines were screaming, Sean didn't know what to do so he hopped on one foot toward the player with the ball. I don't know what he thought he'd do once he got there. Another time Sean was playing forward with a couple other smaller boys on his team. The coach called for substitutions. The three smaller boys left the game and three larger rested boys join the game. They score a goal within a minute. The other coach called a substitution, but he was a minute too late. They don't keep track of the goals, but by my count it was 5 to 0. Sean said it was 8 to 0. I almost lost Sean's jacket as I threw it into the back seat. The wind had other ideas. It grabbed the jacket, took it out of the backseat, and off it went. I raced after and caught it across the street. It was just about to go airborne again.

Paul and Suzanne said I could take Sean home or to PD's. Sean wanted to go home. He said his mom was at church but gets out 10:00 so I figured she wouldn't be much longer. Sean and I played Baseball on his PS2. His Minnesota Twins beat my Milwaukee Brewers 16 to 0. In frustrations I started beaning his batters. It was after 11 am. I had things to do. Sean called PD's, his mom was there. Sean asked permission to stay home alone. I called Victor. I told him I would meet him at his house.

After seeing grandma and taking dad home I continued on to Victor's house. He had a North High coupon book. We decided to eat at Subway on Broadway. We talked and had a nice lunch. Victor distracted me as I ran a red light right in front of a police car by Merit Care. The cop must have been distracted by Victor as well. We laughed about that rest of the way home. I went the same way back making sure I paid attention. I stopped at PD's. Paul was still waiting for his Sysco order to arrive. I sat down and kept him company until it arrived.

May 7, 2005

Bunny Hunt

I wanted to help Victor get back online, and I wanted to do something about all those rabbits in our back yard. I called Victor. I told him I would bring my old modem over. I asked him if he found me an air rifle yet. "I'll call you right back." Victor called Dean and he was kind enough to borrow us a Crosman Classic 2100 model air rifle.
When I got to Victor's house I unhooked his old Diamond Supra modem and hooked up my Global Village modem. I had to load a modem profile, but I didn't have to restart the computer. I got on the internet and opened his email. It seemed he blew up another modem with his bad downtown power/ phone line. Later Victor calls to say it's not working and then later still that it is working. I really think the phone line problem has not been solved. He is thinking about upgrading his computer. I suggest a cheap new Dell or a BW300 Mac tower.

In Victor's basement we play around with the pellet gun and he shows me the xxx model .22 rifle Dean located for him. That was very nice. A lovely weapon. To bad I can't shoot the rabbits in town with that. Still the replacement Crosman seems to have a lot of power. I head for the van to get the parts of Victor's old Crosman which I unfortunately dismantled. We loaded a pellet on the back stairs. Just then a big fat rabbit bounces into the back yard. "Hand me the gun." The rabbit looks at me. I aim for the head and miss. The rabbit continues to chew. I load another pellet, pump up and sight for his body. He jumps a foot into the air and takes off behind the shed. I load up another pellet and head down the stairs. "Where are you going?" "I'm going to finish him off." "He's long gone by now, hopefully he'll die in someone else's yard." The rabbit is barely breathing behind the shed. I put a pellet in it's head. Next Victor decided to shoot the clothes line. Ping! I can't believe it. As he aims the barrel is wandering back and forth. Victor claims it's breathing. I load a pellet. I plan a joke I pump the barrow only three times mind you, I swing wildly and purposely fire at his shed. Ping! Unfortunately it goes through the shed. I'm sorry but he thinks it funny. I made a joke about killing a misquote (the first one this year for me), a rabbit and a shed. I line up another shot and carefully aim at the clothes line. I'm not very confident, it's windy out. Ping! I'm very excited. I have visions of dead rabbits in our backyard. "Those rabbits won't be safe from me. I don't care where they hid. They may even think they're safe hiding in the shed, but as you can see they are not!" Victor laughs. Back home three rabbits are chasing each other all over our back yard. I take the screen off the window, crank it open and line up the first shot. Bang Bang Bank, mom is pounding on the window in the laundry room. It scares the rabbits and I haven't seen them in four days!

May 5, 2005

Grandma Anna Goes To Sleep

Dad was in Minneapolis again. Holly from Elim Nursing home called a couple times. Thinking it might be important I called dad at Gladys' house. No answer, I called Harris and had them transfer me to Scott's cell phone. Dad told me it was about a meeting and wouldn't be terribly important but he would called Holly. Gladys saw the call on her caller ID and gave me a call. I told her it was nothing. I hadn't but hung up with Elaine called from Elim. Anna was unresponsive. She was resting comfortably but it was time to call the family together. "Is there anyone else you want me to call?" I asked her to call Gladys as I knew Gladys was home. I would try to get a hold of dad. Dad was out to lunch with Michelle, so I told the receptionist to have him call the office when he got back. I called mom at work and Suzanne. I called Judy on the off chance that Gladys didn't. Judy got the message and was struggling to keep it together. Gladys called back to say they're thinking of coming to Fargo tomorrow. They decided to take separate vehicles and Gladys left that evening. Dad called back and took the news well. He would try to finish up early tomorrow and drive back on schedule. Hospice of the Red River Valley called. They had been checking up on Anna for over a year. She was very nice. "Do you have any questions?" I asked her to clarify grandma's medical condition, as Elaine was rather vague. It was more serious and final than I had realized. They had given her morphine to make Anna more comfortable and hooked up an oxygen feed.
I called for Suzanne. I wanted to clarify and update her on grandma's condition. Tim was home sick. Suzanne was hoping it wasn't what Sean had as Sean was very sick for a couple days. Paul wasn't much better: Strep Throat, ear infection, and sinus infection. I felt bad as I kept waking him up. Suzanne was a church again.

Friday was quiet. Dad got to Fargo around 8:00 PM and stopped at Elim. She was still resting comfortably.

Saturday I stopped at Elim after Sean's Soccer game. Gladys and dad were there with the facility Minister. Judy showed up and the minister had us join hands for a prayer. Once back home I assembled a 'In Remembrance' bulletin for grandma. I knew I wanted to use her High School Graduation picture. I tried a Christmas photo from 1994 but didn't care for it. In grandma's box she had lots of funeral bulletins so I knew what was required. I had an obituary that I had written for grandma in October. Funny, I didn't realize I had written it. I didn't even bother to read it as it was just for placement and I sort of thought Gladys had written it. Dad changed the bible verse from 'The Lord's Prayer' to 'The Lord Is My Shepherd' verse. Gladys and Judy came over for supper. Judy reviewed my work and we talked about making some changes.

Sunday I emailed all the Maas relatives asking Gene to forward my message to some family members who I didn't have emails for. I also emailed Janice Diemert and asked Ray Diemert to forward my email to the Schneekloth and Peterson families. I typed up some of the changes Judy was working on. I finally read the obituary. It all came back to me. I did write it- based off of notes Gladys gave me. I thought it was pretty good too. When I met up with Gladys and Judy at PD's On First, Judy had more notes and had written not one but two obituaries. Gladys says Anna's breathing has grown shallower this morning.

May 5, 2005

Renaissance Center Vote

Paul was mentioned in the Fargo Forum "Paul Dobbins, owner of PD's on First, thought downtown would have benefited from the events center, but said his business will do well either way. Dobbins said the Cityscapes campaign has been great for bringing attention to the block. He hopes property owners keep their promises to make improvements to their stores."

Dad and I voted mid-morning. My feeling was it would fail, but it might get close to 50 percent of the vote. Evert Schumacher from my old Baker Wholesale days was voting behind us. "Be sure to vote no he told us." Then I was sure it was going down. As late as 7 PM, Suzanne called and was optimistic. By the 9 PM news, the measure had gone down in flames. Over 70 percent against.

May 3, 2005

Sean's First Communion

Sean has been studying for his first communion. I vaguely remember my first communion. As a Lutheran I was quite a bit older than Sean. Sean seems excited about it. I remember being excited myself. His grandparents Ken and Fern came up for the weekend. Every one made arrangements to attend the service. I thought it was too early, that and I felt I would probably burst into flames. Ha ha.

I arrived for the lunch reception at 11:15 AM. Jennifer was chatting with Tim. I said hello to Ken and Fern. I congratulated Sean. He was busy opening gifts. Even though they were all religious, he was happy with them. I sat at the kids table with Suzanne, Jennifer, dad and the boys. Sandwiches and chips were good. I took my dessert into the dining room to talk with Paul, Ken and Fern. After lunch, I played Racko with Sean. He's either getting dumber or I'm not holding back as much. I didn't want to hang around all day so I was the first one to leave.

May 1, 2005

April Blog Entries

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May 1, 2005

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